But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

Southern Baptist Theological Seminary - Apologetic Report

What is the best time of day to pray and meditate on the Word of God? For me, the best time is the early morning. With four young children in the house, all of whom are usually still sleeping this is the only quiet time in my home. This time also has the advantage of beginning your day by lashing your heart to the mast that is Christ. This was the

Pastor, your spiritual health matters to your church. Your pursuit of Christ impacts your people. You know this, of course, but does your daily schedule reflect it? When you allocate time and energy toward the spiritual disciplines, do you do so with a view toward what is at stake? God’s sovereign purposes are not dependent on your maturity,

Tuesday, 22 September 2015 05:11

Guard your hearts at all costs in the war with porn

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Pornography is one of the greatest dangers facing the church today. I could offer you statistics and case studies showing the devastating effects pornography is having on our church leaders but that is not needed. You know the dangers and the widespread effects of pornography. Based on statistics alone there is a reasonable chance that some

Friday, 18 September 2015 04:46

How to apply logic to arguments, part 2

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Editors’ note: Part I of this two-part series was published on Tuesday.

Engaging the culture involves more than the picking apart of opposing arguments. While this is important, you must develop and use well-reasoned arguments. It is far too easy to point out the faults and inaccuracies of someone else’s argument, but to make this your

Tuesday, 15 September 2015 11:08

How to apply logic to arguments, part 1

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Planned Parenthood is exposed for trafficking aborted baby parts. Bruce Jenner changes himself into Caitlyn Jenner and the culture lauds him as courageous. The United States Supreme Court in a landmark decision, recognizes homosexual marriage. In the midst of the maelstrom of change in American culture, traditional Christian beliefs and values are

Thursday, 10 September 2015 05:17

Putting the cookies on the lowest shelf

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I recently met with about 80 contractors who will be working on a new building for the church I serve as pastor. I introduced myself and the 200-year history of our church, told them about our mission to glorify God by proclaiming Jesus Christ and serving others, and then I turned it over to our architect. From that point on, I might as well have

Tuesday, 08 September 2015 03:29

5 good reasons to read the entire Bible every year Featured

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I vividly recall two pivotal conversations with pastors shortly after I surrendered to gospel ministry in the late-1990s. The conversations were pivotal because in them I was exposed to two divergent approaches to ministry and the Lord used them to convince me that I must saturate my mind with Scripture

In one conversation, I asked a longtime

Thursday, 03 September 2015 02:00

6 reasons church is not optional for seminary students

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Whenever I hire a staff member, I will always get around to asking what he did in seminary. Where did he go to church? How did he serve when no one was paying him to do the job? If the Holy Spirit and a man’s calling don’t compel him to love and serve the church, he won’t do it well for a paycheck either.

One could probably

In the same way that basic training cannot fully prepare a soldier for the hellish nature of a real war, seminary cannot fully prepare a future pastor for the bullets and hand grenades that will be launched at him in the local church on the field of real ministry. If I have learned anything in my time as a pastor, it has been that reality. It is a

Thursday, 27 August 2015 03:24

30 tips for new seminary students

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I am beginning my second semester of doctoral studies. I thought it may be beneficial to write (from a current student’s perspective and one that recently finished his M.Div.) some of the things I wish I would have known before beginning seminary.

It is by no means exhaustive and they are not in order of importance.

  1. Prayer/meditation. One of

One of my favorite quotes is from Sir Isaac Newton, discoverer of the law of gravity. In a letter to Robert Hooke on February 5, 1676, Newton wrote, “If I have seen farther, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” Newton saw farther than anyone had before, precisely because he was willing to learn from those who had gone before

The speech of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden last Saturday at the memorial for the five unarmed servicemen killed in Chattanooga demonstrates the difficulty, uncertainty, and confusion among politicians in dealing with Islam and Islamism. The speech shows the apparent dissonance among the various voices in the same political party.

In his speech,

Tuesday, 18 August 2015 06:15

What is God calling me to? Your past could be key to your future Featured

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Every kid in America heard that question umpteen times growing up. The answers are as varied as the kids themselves. My 13-year-old daughter’s dream vocation seems to change as often as she changes her clothes.

College students hear a version of this age old question, too. Most often it’s, “What’s your major?” The

Friday, 14 August 2015 04:00

Counseling and the heart of Christ

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“What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it?” Luke 15:4

 

In Luke 15, the religious leaders were upset with Jesus.  Some people who were messed up were drawing near to hear Jesus’

How can your ministry equip parents with the resources they need?

In the first place, help parents to see that if they are believers in Jesus Christ, God has already equipped them with his Spirit, his Word and the community of faith (John 16:12–14; Eph 4:11–16; 2 Tim 3:16–17; Heb. 13:21). Through these gifts from God, it is

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